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This is not my favorite month.  I even hate it so much that I purposely misspelled “you’re” above, the grammatical error that irks me the most (I think I broke up with a guy over this before, among other things, but he always got it wrong even after I corrected him on it many times… and yes, I do realize there’s a change I’ll always be single).  Anyways, this August has to go on record as one of the worst since 1977 (when Elvis died).  In summary, it’s been hot.  And it’s been raining cars and dogs, figuratively not literally, in the money expenditures department.

Last Sunday, the car wouldn’t start.  Assumed it was the battery, which is was, but also a broken thermostat and cracked rear shock.  The thermostat I can’t vouch for, but the battery and shock repair were obviously legit.  NTB told me about the shock back in February when I got my tires replaced, but I said no to them on repairing it in typical cheap Emily fashion.  It wasn’t an emergency fix, I’m not that negligent a car owner.

Today, Rocky went in for his bi-annual teeth cleaning.  Little guy needed 5 extractions on his front bottom teeth (I’ve never counted, but I can’t envision there being more than 6).  They charge like $30-45 PER extraction, so that adds up, especially on top of the blood panel, actual teeth cleaning, and antibiotics.  If they charge me for clipping his nails, which I requested they do while he’s knocked out because he hates it so much, then I’ll really lose my $hit.  The good news is he is fine and recovering, and after doing some research I learned that it is important to extract them if they’re loose. Otherwise it’s painful and they could get a bacterial infection.  I’m just nervous to pick him up and take a peek at his teeth.  If I had any money left, I’d go to the east side and get him fitted with a gold grill for the bottom front.  But, after all this, I am not broke, but on the verge of tears based on how much I’ve spent in the last not even 7 days, so we’ll have to put the grill on his list for Santa.        

My Mom reassured me that it always happens like this… every once in a while you get hit out of the blue with major expenses.  She also told me that I didn’t need to go crazy and sell my car and start subsiding on beans and rice.  But, I’m considering it.  The latter part of that statement.  I really love my car and want to hang onto it for a long time.  I just might want to consider getting a second job… like at Starbucks where I can at least get my coffee habit paid for.  Or if Walter White was real and lived in Austin, I might do a little freelance work for him.  Ha.            

Oh, and one last bit of crappy for August.  Time Warner finally cut off my free cable.  Bastards.  I thought I might be a glitch in the system or somehow my apartment complex provided free basic cable, but I guess I was wrong.  I went so far as to call them to report an outting but they said they didn’t see anything for my area.  They put me on hold to connect me to a techie who could help me pinpoint the problem, but after waiting about 15 mins I gave up.  I was slightly curious to see how far they would go before looking at my account and realizing I wasn’t paying for any TV.  I decided to take the advice of another cable-less friend and ordered an HD antenna that looks like the Star Trek enterprise.  It comes tomorrow and fingers are crossed I get all the channels, especially NBC, because that’s my jam.  In the meantime, I’ve started Mad Men from the beginning on Netflix and am doing just fine.  Take that, Time Warner.  And August. 

But, not too hard, August, because I don’t want any other bombs dropped on me in the next 10 days.  Which, I’m guessing I probably just jinxed myself with that statement.

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If I needed further confirmation that my dog plays for the other team… I think I got it from this picture.  He looks like he’s about to passionately plant one on Pete!

Who needs a chocolate on their pillow when you can have a jalapeno?

Clearly, if that is what CPA stood for, I’d already have my licence.  Unfortunately, it is not.  And that means I have to study a lot.  A lot a lot.  So, please don’t hold it against me if I have my head in a book for the next 6-9 months or so.  It’s not ideal, but I’ve come this far to not make a go of it.

Speaking of another “CPA”…

Hold your breath, I am back.  It was a busy December and since I’m low on time these days, I’m gonna quickly recap the last couple weeks. 

I already told you about Graceland.  And about the Elfing.  So after that, there was the White Rock Marathon Relay.  I ran with Robyn and some her of Speech Path peeps.  I had the last leg, which was 6.2 and slightly downhill most of the way.  Which is probably why I was able to set a 10K PR of 47:48.  The nervous energy had been bundling up all morning as I waited for my turn and so it’s no wonder I thought I was going to pass out at the 3 mile marker when my time was under 22 minutes.  I took about 3 ten second baby walk breaks but kept up my pace.  Originally, I was hoping I could keep us under the 4 hour mark, but when it got closer, I decided to shoot for under 3:45.  And we did just that… 3:44.  6th place in your division isn’t too shabby. 

That same weekend I also took my Audit final and (hopefully) became CPA eligible.  I’ve re-evaluated my transcript 15 times to make sure I meet the requirements, so unless there’s something dumb I  missed, I should be in.  And with that I made the plunge and purchased my CPA review course.  Holy Batman balls, that stuff ain’t cheap.  It costs about 3 times what it should, in my humble opinion.  FYI, come March when I plan to start studying, you might not see or hear from me for a while.  And it won’t be because your armpits stink.

Christmas came next and there are really only two things to say about that.

One, here are the tackiest Christmas decorations I’ve ever seen.  An inflatable Santa popping out of a NASCAR car with a polar bear waving a checkered flag?  Really, Texas?  And yes, I maneuvered my way on to these people’s lawn to get a close-up.

Two, what could be a better Christmas gift than matching his and her’s Snuggies?  I really don’t think it get’s any better than this.

I know I left out a lot, but there are a few highlights.  Stay tuned for an update on the Daniel Fast as well as my new ride…

I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to think Rocky might have a career in modeling.  At least for glasses.

My Mom and I got to have some serious hanging out time with the Aggie relatives, which usually leads to a multitude of laughter.  Back when they used to live in Austin and my cousins and I were much younger, we used to make routine trips to Luby’s for dinner.  Once we finished off our liver and onions, we’d sit around the table for a while talking and wrapping our green cloth napkins around our heads Aunt Jemima style.  We’d giggle as our parents would laugh uncontrollably at us.

Saturday night, Rocky stole the show.  As we were all standing around saying our goodbyes, I decided to put my sunglasses on Rocky as he was being craddled in my Mom’s arms.  Instantly, he was surrounded by papparazzi snapping his picture.  He didn’t mind at all… in fact, he hammed it up a bit.  Anyone need a dog sunglasses model?  He’ll do reading glasses, too!

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And yes, I am completely taking credit for being one of those dog owners who dresses their dogs up.  It’s shameful, I know.

I’m not sure what I was thinking a couple weeks ago when I booked a vet appointment for Rocky at 8:30 on a Saturday morning.  I have my trainer at 11:30, so I suppose I was playing it safe and allowing extra time.  Good for me.

At 8:15 we rolled out of bed, got dressed (just me) and got in the car.  I figured a Starbucks coffee was in order.  When I got there, they told me my coffee was on the house because they were in the process of brewing a fresh pot.  Awesome.  I can wait 30 seconds to save two bucks.  Sure.  We then got to the vet and as I was waiting in the lobby for our room to be ready, Rocky tugged on the leash, which I was holding in the same hand as my coffee, and in slow motion…. there… went…. my…. fresh…. cup…. of…. free…. coffee…. everywhere.

The funny thing is that I debated the whole drive from Starbucks to City Vet on whether or not I should leave the coffee in the car in fear of spilling it in the vet’s office.  

Aside from that disappointment, I was informed that Rocky needs to lose weight.  2 whole pounds!!!  Poor guy, I guess he won’t be indulging on any Valentine’s Day treats today.  Big fat bummer!

However, the rough start to today was quickly redeemed with another cup of coffee and the package of fresh cookies and milk that were delivered right when I walked in the door!  Happy Valentine’s Day!

It was a fun Christmas this year because it was Rocky’s first!  Well, I guess he technically had a Christmas last year, but it wasn’t spent in his “forever home”.  He definitely made out like a bandit this year!

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The tradition at Mom’s is that we stretch out the gift opening for as long as possible.  One person goes at a time and we take breaks to refill on coffee and to grab another piece of Shortbread (which is always in the stockings!).  We open gifts in the same order (Mom, Dan, Emily) until there are only gifts left for moi.  Once the gifts are over, we move on to the stockings.  I think this whole process lasted almost 3 hours this year.  Not too shabby.

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At around noon, we finally had breakfast.  My Mom began picking up cinnamon rolls from The Kitchen Door when I was a little tyke and it’s become another tradition to have them on Christmas morning.  They are so freaking delicious!

Mom and I got matching jackets from Banana Republic.  She bought the jacket for me while we were out shopping in Memphis and fell in love with it but unfortunately they didn’t have her size.  Sneaky little me found it online, claiming they only had her size in purple, and ordered it without her knowing.  The jacket sorta reminds me of the the Beatles “Help” album cover, so we tried to recreate it…

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Rocky’s big Christmas gift was a new bed.  He got in it immediately and took probably 5 or 6 naps throughout the day.

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Little did my parents know that their son, Charlie, would have wanted one, too.  I think he was only slightly jealous of Rocky…

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I managed to also accumulate a new printer (yay for scanning stuff for my blog… I guess it’s gettin’ pretty serious), lots of soaps, a ton of Aveda shampoo, an Elvis coffee table book and endless amounts of Anderson’s coffee.  Oh and let’s not forget my one month’s supply of gum… it’s even in order!

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We spent the afternoon napping, working out and then we fixed our traditional Christmas dinner: steak, sweet potatoes and brussels sprouts.  I know you are jealous!  I gave Mom the Sex and The City movie, so we watched it afterwards.  All in all, a pretty swell day.

Here are the rest of the Christmas pics.

This being the only free weekend at home I’ve had in 3 weeks and the only one I’ll have before Christmas, I had to make it a productive one.  I counted about 10 places I needed to go to this weekend and yesterday I crossed about half of them off.  And I managed to wrap gifts, make my grandma’s fudge (OMG) and go hangout with my favorite almost old married couple.  

I’ve decided to *try to give up Starbucks and resort back to homemade brewing.  I’ve asked Santa for some sweet to go coffee mugs, so I’m thinking if/once he delivers I’ll get into the habit of taking my coffee from home.  Of course, what fun would life be if I didn’t indulge in Starbucks occasionally?  It wouldn’t.  So, I’m going to make Starbucks a Friday morning treat.  But, yesterday and today it’s been quite an adjustment.  My homemade coffee is not nearly as strong as theirs and I almost feel like I’m drinking instant Foldger’s or something.  Hopefully Santa puts some good Anderson’s coffee in my stocking, too…

I also think I am BFF with my alterations lady.  She loves me.  She really does.  You should see her face light up when I walk in the store.  “HIIIIIII, HOW ARE YOOOOUUUU?”.  It gives me warm fuzzies inside.  I saw her yesterday to pick up my dress for Erin’s wedding.  It was nice because we got to exchange Merry Christmases and for kicks I threw in the classic “I’ll see you next year!”

Last night, we went to dinner at Olivella’s in Snyder Plaza and got to sit outside.  It felt very non-Dallas like.  It was fun!  And afterwards we went back to Suz’s to watch the beloved Home Alone.  I had to go to three places to find it on DVD.  Apparently, it’s a big hit this year and everyone is sold out.  Interesting, since it’s been out for 15+ years, right?  It was as good as always.  And of course we knew all the words.  I think Baby’s First Christmas enjoyed it, too… although he was asleep on the couch for almost all of it.

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